2006 Fowler Election Platform – Graffitti

by

as originally posted on my Election Website

The application of art, drawings or words on to any public or private surface without the consent of the property owner is a form of vandalism.

Sometimes, graffiti can be very artistic, which gives rise to some popularity and leads to arguments in favor of its legitimization.

At the other end of the scale there is gang graffiti which functions to mark territorial boundaries, has little or no artistic value whatsoever, and contributes to a general sense of squalor and a heightened fear of crime.

Where to draw the line, and how to enforce it?

Some of the goals which are identified in London’s Strategic Plan include streetscape beautification, citizen involvement, and community spirit. I suggest that we could provide graffiti artists with an avenue of legal expression and accomplish these goals at the same time, by erecting “easels” which they could then apply to the city to use.

I also strongly support the proposed GraffitiGo! Day.

“We’re concerned about tagging on mailboxes, road signs, stop signs and other public property in neighbourhoods, because it’s often the signs of gangs… Tagging is something we don’t want. The community has to demonstrate it’s in charge of its streets, not gangs.”  1

From the 2006/09/25 CAPS meeting, something to keep an eye on:
“4. (9) That the following actions be taken with respect to the eradication of graffiti in our community:
(a) the General Manager of Engineering and Environmental Services and City Engineer BE REQUESTED to report back at a future meeting of the Community and Protective Services Committee on a program which would further engage and coordinate the assistance of London Police Services, local utility companies, Canada Post, companies having neighbourhood distribution boxes for various publications, and charitable organizations having neighbourhood drop-off boxes to implement a co-operative and ongoing program to remove graffiti from utility, postal, media, and household article drop-off boxes within the community, including potential sources of funding for such a program; it being noted that given the lack of funding from usual City sources, sponsorship opportunities should be explored, including the participation of local businesses and service clubs; and,
(b) the Thames Valley District School Board and the London District Catholic School Board BE REQUESTED to advise the Community and Protective Services Committee as to potential programs they could participate in to engage students in eradicating graffiti in the community, perhaps as part of the curriculum requirement for each student to complete 40 hours of volunteer service to the community. (2006-P07-00)”

Sources:

1. “Graffiti battle sign of times in safety week”; Joe Matyas; London Free Press; 2006/10/01

2.

Some of what I’ve had to say in the past

Subject: Go Graffiti Go Day
Date: Fri, 21 Jul 2006 10:00:38 -0400
From: “Donna Szpakowski”
To: fowgre@yahoo.ca

Good Morning, Gregory

Thanks very much for your support of our initiative – You most definitely do have permission to help us promote the event. Just a bit of background, the actual “Go Graffiti Go Day” was founded by “The Community Guider London – Middlesex” and is being developed jointly with Neighbourhood Watch London as part of London’s first annual “Community Safety Week”.

If you would like more information you are most welcome to email myself, or call me during the day at 659-2882 ext 228 or after hours and 471-9027.

Again, thanks for expressing your support!

Sincerely,

Donna Szpakowski

Business Advisor

316 Rectory Street, 3rd Floor

London, Ontario, N5W 3V9

(519) 659-2882 ext 228

Date: Tue, 18 Jul 2006 19:28:02 -0400 (EDT)
From: “Gregory Fowler”
Subject: Go Graffiti Go Day
To: nwl@london.ca

To Whom It May Concern,

Just to let you know that I spotted your proposal in yesterday’s Community and Protective Services Committee agenda and give it my unqualified support.

Anything that we can do to bring citizens together and take pride in their neighbourhoods, is a good thing.

Should your proposal be adopted at Council, as I expect that it will be, do I have your permission promote the initiative while campaigning throughout the ward?

Gregory T. Fowler,
Candidate, Ward One
962 Eagle Crescent
London, Ontario; N5Z 3H7
519-649-0500

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